Serves 4

Tinned soup is the first food you associate with camping. Instead of opening a tin of Heinz Big Soup, get chopping fresh, seasonal vegetables, supplemented with a can of borlotti beans. If you are feeling adventurous, source fresh borlotti beans as they are around at the height of summer, but they do need preparation, requiring 40-45 minutes cooking, which is a fair amount of faffing for a camper. If you do persist with fresh beans, pod them, discarding brown and mouldy ones and cook them in unsalted water for about 40 minutes until soft, drain and then add to the recipe as follows.


1 red pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed with salt against the chopping board with the blade of a sharp knife
4 tomatoes, quartered
2 tbs parsley, chopped, also other herbs, like chives or rosemary
1 x 250g tin of borlotti beans, drained, mash half with a spoon, leaving the other half whole
400g seasonal mixed green vegetables like fresh peas, green beans and broad beans in the summer
¼ seasonal cabbage, finely sliced
100g pasta, small shapes or spaghetti broken up into small lengths if possible, but any will do, larger shapes may need a bit more cooking though
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 litre of water or vegetable stock, made with a cube, concentrate or fresh from the supermarket fridge


1 large pan
Single ring stove
Chopping board
Sharp knife
Spoon for stirring
Sieve or colander


Heat the oil and add the red pepper, onion and garlic. Fry very gently until soft. Add 1 litre of water or stock if you have it. Bring to the boil, turn down and simmer, add the mashed borlotti beans and stir thoroughly. After five minutes, add the pasta and green beans, whole borlotti beans, tomatoes and other green vegetables, except the cabbage. Cook for five to ten minutes and check the pasta and the whole borlotti beans, cook for another few minutes if necessary until the pasta and beans are done. Then add the cabbage and parsley, stir it round until it has wilted over the heat. Season and serve with a drizzle of olive oil and fresh bread.

For a variation: At the beginning of cooking you could add bacon or pancetta cut into small chunks and fry with the onion, garlic and red pepper, if you are feeling carnivorous.

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